Statistics – Bachelor of Arts

The quantitative skills that you’ll gain from a Massey Bachelor of Arts (Statistics) can set you apart from other graduates when applying for jobs.

Where you can study

Distance and online
Manawatū campus (Palmerston North)

International students

International students are not New Zealand citizens or residents.

Definition of New Zealand citizens and residents

Open to international students studying online from outside New Zealand
Note: Not all courses are available at all campuses

Specialise in Statistics for your Bachelor of Arts at Massey

A Massey BA (Statistics) will teach you to interpret the science of evidence. Statistics allow us to quantify risk and make effective decisions even when we are uncertain about the world around us. Should I buy or sell my stock? Is this new treatment effective against breast cancer? What adverts should my website display in order to increase my revenue? How can I better interpret that weak distress signal coming from a vessel far out at sea?

Being able to use data to find answers to questions like these makes statisticians some of the most highly sought-after employees.

Learn the theory and its practical relevance

As a Massey BA (Statistics) student you will learn the key theories of statistics, but you will also get the quantitative skills to conduct robust statistical analysis that is effective in the real world.

Big Data = more jobs for statisticians

The explosion of information and data available to the world has made those who can interpret it indispensable. Big Data has opened up a huge range of career opportunities for those who are talented in working with figures.

Earn more

A Ministry of Education report conducted over nine years showed that science, technology, engineering and maths graduates have high relative earnings compared to other graduates.

A Bachelor of Arts in Statistics is a good fit if you:

  • want to create quantitative solutions to modern-day problems
  • enjoy teamwork and collaborating with people from different subject areas
  • are confident working with modern information technology.

Planning information

If you study full time, in the first year you’ll take eight 15-credit courses, making a total of 120 credits.

If you wish to study over two semesters, you should aim for 60 credits per semester. You may be able to take some courses at summer school if you wish. Make sure you include courses that are prerequisites for the next level of courses you wish to study.

You need to pass five courses at 300-level for your BA. One of these (230310) is in the compulsory core and three are required for your major. If you are not taking a double major or a minor, you will need to take one 300-level elective course to meet this requirement.

About this major

A major consists of 120 credits (eight courses) in Statistics.

The more advanced statistics courses build on the basic concepts learned in the 100-level course. You should take 161122 Statistics (preferred) or 161111 Applied Statistics in your first year.

For this major you need a basic background in mathematics, eg at least Year 12/NCEA Level 2 mathematics, with Year 13/NCEA Level 3 mathematics recommended.  If you don't have this prior learning you should enrol in 124103 Biophysical Principles or 160104 Introductory Mathematics for Science (if you don't have NCEA Level 2 mathematics) or 160105 Methods of Mathematics (if you have Level 2 but not Level 3 mathematics).

You will develop a wide variety of skills and techniques at the next level to enable you to competently undertake the more advanced courses.


Completing a minor is optional. Minors increase the breadth of your degree. They give you extra knowledge, attributes and capabilities.

A minor must be in a different subject from your major.

A Bachelor of Arts (Statistics) with a minor

You may choose a minor from the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Business or Bachelor of Science. If the minor is from another degree the regulations of that qualification will apply.

A statistics minor (for students who are studying a different degree) 

If you are not studying towards a BA (Statistics) and wish to complete a minor in statistics see the BA regulations for requirements.  

Official regulations

To understand what you need to study and must complete to graduate read the official rules and regulations for this qualification.

You should read these together with all other relevant Statutes and Regulations of the University including the General Regulations for Undergraduate Degrees, Undergraduate Diplomas, Undergraduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas and Graduate Certificates.

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the qualification or specialisation you enrolled in may no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these qualifications go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Get advice button on this page if you have any questions.

Courses you can enrol in

Course planning key

Courses that need to be completed before moving onto a course at the next level. For example, a lot of 200-level courses have 100-level prerequisite courses.
Courses that must be completed at the same time as another course are known as corequisite courses.
Some courses are restricted against each other because their content is similar. This means you can only choose one of the offered courses to study and credit to your qualification.

Core courses for the Bachelor of Arts

As well as the specialisation courses listed below, this qualification has core courses that you will need to complete.

Bachelor of Arts core courses

Statistics courses

Compulsory courses

Choose 30 credits from
Course code: 161250 Data Analysis 15 credits

Biology, psychology, and other sciences require statistical methods for analysing and visualising data. This course is designed to be accessible to students from any discipline, first building a deeper understanding of fundamental statistical concepts, then teaching a range of practical approaches for exploring statistical relationships, testing hypotheses, evaluating models, and presenting conclusions.

Prerequisites: 1611xx or 297101 Restrictions: 161220

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Course code: 161251 Regression Modelling 15 credits

Common data analysis and regression techniques for application in science, business and social science. Topics include simple and multiple regression; linear models with categorical explanatory variables; model diagnostics; inference for linear models; polynomial regression; models for time dependence; methods for variable selection; non-linear and weighted regression.

Prerequisites: 1611xx or 297101 Restrictions: 161221

View full course details

Subject courses

Choose at least 15 credits from
Course code: 161101 Statistics for Business 15 credits

An introduction to the presentation, analysis and interpretation of quantitative data. Topics include the construction of charts and summary statistics, probability, sampling, hypothesis testing, regression, time series analysis and quality management.

Restrictions: 115101, 161100, 161111, 161120, 161122, 161130, 161140, 297101

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Course code: 161111 Applied Statistics 15 credits

Statistical literacy, the ability to understand and reason with statistics and data, is becoming increasingly important as our world becomes more and more data-rich. This course focuses on developing statistical literacy in real-world contexts. We teach students to use software (Excel and RStudio) to summarise, display and analyse data. We explore data collection techniques including sampling methods and experimental design. We introduce statistical inference methods (confidence intervals, hypothesis testing and regression) with an emphasis on communicating results in context.

Restrictions: 115101, 161101, 161120, 161122, 161130, 161140

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Course code: 297101 Statistical Data Science 15 credits

An introduction to computer programming and statistics for transforming, visualising and modelling data to discover information and support decision making. A practical approach to analysing New Zealand data includes data cleaning, statistical summaries, data wrangling, visualisation and predictive modelling. Includes an exploration of the statistical ideas of sampling, probability and inference as well as modern programming tools emphasising reproducibility.

Restrictions: 161122

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Choose at least 15 credits from
Course code: 161222 Design and Analysis of Experiments 15 credits

The planning, conduct and analysis of scientific experiments, using examples from chemical, biological, genomic, and engineering sciences. Manipulation and visualisation of experimental data; advantages and disadvantages of various designs; coping with missing data and practical constraints. Introduction to design techniques and concepts including randomisation, blocking, structured treatments, balance and orthogonality, crossed and nested effects, pseudo-replication.

Prerequisites: 1611xx or 297101 Restrictions: 161322

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Course code: 233214 GIS and Spatial Statistics 15 credits

Introduction to handling and analysis of digital geospatial data. Operation of GIS software, including collection, processing and understanding of data, production of maps and geospatial projection systems. Integration of spatial statistical software with GIS. Introduction to appropriate spatial statistics techniques including kernel smoothing, kriging, point processes and spatially correlated areal data.

Prerequisites: 161111 or 161122 or 297101 Restrictions: 233251, 233301

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Choose at least 45 credits from
Course code: 161304 Statistical Modelling 15 credits

This course covers the ideas underlying statistical modelling, its implementation through computational methods, and links to practical applications. Topics include probability and random variables, models for discrete and continuous data, model selection, model fitting and goodness of fit, model inference, and introduction to stochastic processes.

Prerequisites: (160101 or 160102 or 160105) and (161250 or 161251 or 161220 or 161221)

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Course code: 161323 Multivariate Analysis 15 credits

This course teaches methods to understand patterns and structures inherent in data sets containing many variables. The fundamentals of data visualisation, clustering, and dimension reduction with examples taken from a range of applications.

Prerequisites: One of 161222, 161220, 161221, 161250, 161251, 233214 Restrictions: 161762

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Course code: 161324 Data Mining 15 credits

A practical approach to data mining with large volumes of complex data; prepare, cleanse and visualise data; supervised and unsupervised modelling; ensemble and bundling techniques; use of leading software tools.

Prerequisites: One of 161122, 297101, 161220, 161221, 161250 or 161251 Restrictions: 161223 and 161777

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Course code: 161331 Biostatistics 15 credits

Sciences such as biology and medicine yield data that require a wide range of statistical techniques, including standard linear models and their extensions. Case studies are used to demonstrate topics such as nonlinear regression, linear models for binary and count data, and mixed effects models. Emphasis is placed on application of appropriate statistical techniques through extensive use of statistical software.

Prerequisites: 161250 or 161251 or 161220 or 161221 Restrictions: 161327, 161778

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Entry requirements

Admission to Massey

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Specific requirements

There are no specific entry requirements for the Bachelor of Arts (Statistics), outside of university admission regulations. However to be successful in your studies we do recommend that you have a basic background in mathematics. For example Year 12/NCEA Level 2 mathematics.

English language requirements

To study this qualification you must meet Massey University's English language standards.

If you have already completed a bachelor degree

If you have already completed a bachelor degree you may replace 230111 Tū Kupu: Writing and Inquiry or 230112 Tū Arohae: Critical Thinking with courses of your choice. You will need to apply for replacement courses via a Special permission request in your portal and you will need to attach evidence of your completed degree with the request.

English language skills

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, see our English for Academic Purposes (EAP) courses.

Can't meet the entry requirements?

If you need to do a course before you start your qualification, there may be options for you in Summer School.

Fees and scholarships

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

You can view fees for the courses that make up your qualification on the course details pages.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students can find their National Student Number in the student portal.

Scholarship and award opportunities

Search our scholarships and awards

Fees disclaimer

This information is for estimation purposes only. Actual fees payable will be finalised on confirmation of enrolment. Unless otherwise stated, all fees shown are quoted in New Zealand dollars and include Goods and Services Tax, if any. Before relying on any information on these pages you should also read the University's Disclaimer Notice.

Careers and job opportunities

Statistics skills are useful in most areas of government, business, industry, and the sciences. Jobs that require statistic expertise include:


Policy analysis, Census, law, national defence.


Economics, engineering, marketing, computer science, data mining, business analytics.

Physical sciences

Astronomy, chemistry, physics.

Health and medicine

Genetics, clinical trials, epidemiology, pharmacology.


Agriculture, ecology, forestry, animal populations.

International students

New Zealand is a great place to study. Massey University’s reputation is supported by our international rankings, accreditations and associations. We are rated five star plus by the QS World University Rankings.

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